Kyoto & Nara Car Tour



  • THE KYOTO & NARA CAR TOUR is an exclusive tour operated solely for you and your party.
  • We will accommodate your needs, requests and interests. If necessary, your itinerary can be changed to accommodate your existing schedule.
  • A licensed English speaking tour guide will take you to must-see places in Kyoto & Nara in a private car.
  • Pick-up and drop-off services are available.

Kyoto is located nearly 500 kilometers south west of Tokyo, and bounded by mountains to the west, north, and east. Kyoto became Japan's capital in 794 when Emperor Kanmu moved Heijo-kyo Palace in Nara, south of Kyoto, to Heian-kyo Palace (meaning "Capital of Peace") in Kyoto.
Since Heian-kyo Place was modeled on Chang'an (now Xi'an) of the Chinese Tang Dynasty, as in Hejo-kyo Place in Nara, Heian-kyo Palace was laid out in a checkerboard. As a result, unlike today's Tokyo, Kyoto is also arranged on a grid like layout.
Kyoto was Japan's capital for more than 1000 years till the middle of the 19th century. After the political revolution known as the Meiji Restoration in 1868, political power was returned to the emperors from the military head of state; shoguns. Then, Japan's capital was moved to Tokyo from Kyoto by Emperor Meiji. Tokyo has been Japan's capital since then.
More than 1600 temples and 400 shrines are located in Kyoto. 17 temples and shrines are registered as World Cultural Heritage sites. Kyoto boasts of its rich culture, refined cuisine, many dry gardens, works of art, and traditional handcrafts. The Golden and Silver Pavilions are especially popular for their historical significance. Kyoto's three biggest festivals, Gion, Jidai, and Aoi draw the attention of a lot of people every year.

NARA is the original capital of Japan, and the cradle of Japanese civilization from around the 3rd century to the late 8th century. Nara prefecture is roughly divided into three areas; the central part of Nara, present Nara City; the south west area; and the southern part. Each area boasts its own historical remains.
The Central part of Nara, for example, has two popular temples, Kofukuji, and Todaiji Temple where the Great Buddha in Nara is enshrined and one shrine, Kasuga Grand Shrine and the Nara Park, where more than 1000 dear roam around shrines and temples.
The South West of Nara has Horyuji Temple, the first World Heritage Site in Japan and some of the buildings there are well known as the oldest wooden structures in the world.
The Southern part of Nara, known as the Asuka district, is the birthplace of Japan's civilization.
Nara is located south west of Tokyo, about 600 kilometers away from Tokyo. One of the earliest palaces called Heijokyo, "Citadel of Peace" used to be there as Japan's capital building. It was Empress Genmei who moved the capital to Heijokyo in 710 from Fujiwarakyo, located in the southern part of Heijokyo. It lasted 74 years before Heiankyo in Kyoto became Japan's capital.
Heijokyo Palace was based on the Chinese city of Ch'ang-an, and has checkerboard streets just like Kyoto city.
In the earlier stages of Japanese civilization, Japan was greatly influenced by China and Korea in terms of ideas on law and administration, Buddhism, technology, architecture, art and culture.

Recommended Itinerary


Duration:8 hours (Approx.)

  • Kinkakuji, Golden Pavilion (KYOTO)
  • Nijojo Castle (KYOTO)
  • Todai-ji Temple (NARA)
  • Kasuga Shrine (NARA)
  • Nara Park (NARA)

Note: The tour begins at your hotel. The sequence of the tour depends on the location of your hotel.


The Kinkakuji, Golden Pavilion, officially called Rokuonji, used to be the 3rd Shogun Yoshimitsu's villa, a masterpiece in architecture and influenced by Zen Buddhism. It is designated as a World Heritage Site. The garden is a good example of traditional Japanese strolling gardens.
The Golden Pavilion is a three storied structure. The 1st story, Hosui-in, is Shinden-zukuri or in palace style. The 2nd story, Choon-do, is Buke-zukuri or in the style of a samurai house. The 3rd story, Kukkyo-cho, is in Karayo or Zen temple style. This order suggests that in those days Buddhism was placed highest, Samurai warriors came second, and the imperial court and nobility at the bottom.

Nijojo Castle was constructed by shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu in 1603, founder of the Tokugawa Shougnate Government, in order to show his wealth and political power to the imperial court which lost political power in the late 12th century. The castle consists of two parts; Ninomaru and Honmaru - areas with Japanese style gardens. This is also designated as a World Heritage Site.
Ninomaru Palace is 3,300m2 and has 33 rooms and over 800 tatami straw mats, with beautiful paintings drawn by the famous Japanese art school, Kano.


Todaiji Temple, literally Eastern Great Temple, was commissioned by Emperor Shomu , completed in 745, , dedicated to the Great Buddha, and is the most popular sight in Nara. The main hall of the temple (Daibutsuden) is 47.5 m. in height and width, and thought to be the largest wooden structure in the world.
The bronze statue of Buddha is 18 meters tall, its ear is 2.5 meters, its eye is 1 meter and 300 tons of bronze was used for construction.
The Emperor Shomu had the statue of Buddha cast in order to pray for the stability of the nation. Buddhism became a national religion in the Nara period, although it was originally introduced to Japan from China through Korea in the 6th century.
This temple has an impressive gate called Nandaimon or the Great Southern Gate. The gate contains a pair of huge Deva Kings, guardian gods for the Great Buddha, sculptured by two master sculptors, Unkei and Kaikei.

Kasuga Shinto Shrine was founded in 768 as a tutelary shrine of the influential ancient clan, the Fujiwaras. This shrine is also designated as a World Heritage Site. This temple is famous for its around 2000 stone lanterns, which line the approach to the main hall. There are nearly 1000 hanging bronze lanterns. Most of them were donated by worshippers. These lanterns are lit both in February and August every year to grant the wishes of people and to ensure their health and safety. The family crest of the Fujiwaras is a wisteria flower.
You will find a lot of deer in the Nara Park. The deer are believed to be sacred messengers because the Shinto gods of Kasuga Shrine came to this site riding on the backs of a deer.


Number of guests 8 hour Tour charge
(per person)
8 hour Tour charge
(Total Charge)
Type of private transport
1 person 85,000 85,000 Sedan
2 persons 45,000 90,000
3 persons 35,000 105,000 Mini-van
4 persons 27,500 110,000
5 persons 23,000 115,000
  • Tour price may change depending on number of guests.
  • Included: English speaking tour guide; Admission fees; Tolls and Parking
  • Not included: Lunch (Although lunch is not included in the package, your tour guide will be happy to help you find a suitable restaurant).
  • Your tour guide will meet you at your hotel and take you back once the tour concludes.

If you are interested in the tour please book it through the booking form on our Website.

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Toll-Free Telephone:
0120 289276
Local No.:
Our office hours are between 9:30am to 6:30pm
Mailing Address:
Fuji Academy Tours
5-2-1 Kojimachi Chiyoda-ku Tokyo Japan
Licensed Travel Agent No.2-5926